Weekly Economic Update for April 1, 2019
In this week’s recap: stocks close out a great quarter, mortgage rates decline, and Wall Street awaits a wave of IPO action.
Weekly Economic Update
Presented by Jack Turner, April 1, 2019
THE WEEK ON WALL STREET
Stocks ended last week higher as volatility slowed, completing their best quarter since 2009. A Friday tweet from Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin encouraged investors, referring to “constructive” discussions in the ongoing U.S.-China trade negotiations.1
The S&P 500 gained 1.27% for the week. The Dow Industrials and Nasdaq Composite both exceeded that advance: the Dow rose 1.60%; the Nasdaq, 1.42%.2-4
Foreign shares went the other way. The MSCI EAFE index following international stocks retreated 0.91%.5
2019 Could Be a Big Year for IPOs
One of the ride-share pioneers, Lyft, closed on its initial public offering (IPO) on Friday, and a glance at the IPO calendar shows that as many as 226 companies could soon go public, with Uber and Airbnb possibly among them.6
This IPO wave may be a signal of a market top, or it may point to a comeback for risk appetite, which could be healthy for the overall market.
Should some big-name IPOs stumble, it may deter others from moving ahead, which may influence the market psychology. Conversely, an enthusiastic reception may help support further market advances.
Good News for the Housing Market
The Fed’s dovish tone has also influenced home loan rates. Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey shows an average interest rate of just 4.06% on a 30-year, fixed rate mortgage, compared with 4.28% a week earlier and 4.95% in December.7
This news is especially significant given the recent pickup in existing home sales. They jumped 11.8% in February, the biggest monthly gain in more than three years.8
[A 30-year, fixed rate mortgage is a conventional home loan meeting the lending requirements of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, but it is not a mortgage guaranteed or insured by any government agency. Private mortgage insurance, or PMI, is required for any conventional loan with less than a 20% down payment.]
The federal income tax filing deadline is Monday, April 15. However, residents of Maine and Massachusetts have until Wednesday, April 17 to file their 2018 tax return. April 15 is Patriots' Day, and April 16 is Emancipation Day.9
T I P O F T H E W E E K
Good debt (a home loan, a student loan) should be distinguished from bad debt (such as credit card debt with a high-interest rate). Strive to pay off bad debt as quickly as you can, and remember that much of it may be linked to purchases that reflect wants rather than needs.
THE WEEK AHEAD: KEY ECONOMIC DATA
Monday: February retail sales.
Wednesday: ADP’s snapshot of March private sector hiring.
Friday: The Department of Labor’s March jobs report.
Source: Econoday / MarketWatch Calendar, March 29, 2019
The content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The forecasts or forward-looking statements are based on assumptions and may not materialize. The forecasts also are subject to revision. The release of data may be delayed without notice for a variety of reasons.
THE WEEK AHEAD: COMPANIES REPORTING EARNINGS
Tuesday: GameStop (GME), Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA)
Thursday: Constellation Brands (STZ)
Source: Morningstar.com, March 29, 2019
Companies mentioned are for informational purposes only. It should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of the securities. Any investment should be consistent with your objectives, time frame and risk tolerance. The return and principal value of investments will fluctuate as market conditions change. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost. Companies may reschedule when they report earnings without notice.
Q U O T E O F T H E W E E K
“No pessimist ever discovered the secrets of the stars, or sailed to uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.”
T H E W E E K L Y R I D D L E
What is the only planet within our solar system that rotates clockwise?
LAST WEEK’S RIDDLE: Determine the numeral between 1 and 100 that is also nine times the sum of its digits.
ANSWER: 81. 8 + 1 = 9, 9 x 9 = 81.
Jack Turner may be reached at 931-552-1515 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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2 - quotes.wsj.com/index/SPX [3/29/19]
3 - quotes.wsj.com/index/DJIA [3/29/19]
4 - quotes.wsj.com/index/COMP [3/29/19]
5 - quotes.wsj.com/index/XX/990300/historical-prices [3/29/19]
6 - cnbc.com/2019/02/04/a-giant-ipo-wave-is-coming-as-unicorns-whet-investor-appetite.html [2/4/19]
7 - startribune.com/us-mortgage-rates-post-biggest-drop-in-decade-to-4-06-pct/507781302/ [3/29/19]
8 - nar.realtor/newsroom/existing-home-sales-surge-11-8-percent-in-february [3/22/19]
9 - efile.com/tax-day-deadlines/ [3/21/19]